Child robot that vomits and convulses helps train dentists for medical emergencies

Researchers have designed a human-like robot that mimics behaviours of a child in the hope of training dentists. 

Developed by a dental school and robotics company, Tmsuk – both based in Tokyo, Japan– it imitates critical symptoms such as vomiting, fitting and crying.

Named Pedia_Roid, it is controlled using a tablet programmed to stimulate different responses. This sends signals to air cylinders in the joints of the silicon robot that provokes movement and other expressions.

The robot is aimed at both dental and medical students during their training. Developers said it helps to fill a gap where there are ‘few opportunities for clinical training for children in the field of medical education’.

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Robot symptoms

Developed by Showa University’s Department of Orthodontics, other symptoms the robot imitates include:

  • Emotional expressions, such as pain and crying
  • Coughing, sneezing and vomiting.
  • Body movements such as writhing, flapping arms and legs, tonic and clonic spasms
  • Change in face colour and facial expression
  • Eye movements, including the opening and closing of eyelids
  • Different breathing, such as wheezing and auscultation of lung sounds.

It is also possible to cut teeth and replace them individually.

Weighing 23kg, the robot is 110cm tall and modelled on a child aged five to six years old. Currently, the doll costs around 25 million Japanese yen – equivalent to more than £150,000.

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